Pokemon GO is far from the perfect game, and players have made their criticisms known many times just this year. In a recent Reddit post, a player named Mauddib1976 brought up a longstanding divide between members of the fanbase.
During a vacation to Orlando, FL, Mauddib remarked on how much easier gameplay was in large cities. The Redditor stated that they felt sorry for players with health conditions and those who lived in remote communities with few Pokestops or points of interest.
Coupled with the recent changes to remote raiding, many Pokemon GO fans have felt ostracized simply for not living in areas with large populations.
Mauddib concluded their post with, “… it’s clear what base Niantic favors,” and many Pokemon GO players in the comments agreed with the assessment.
Pokemon GO Redditors discuss Niantic’s perceived stance toward rural players
One of the oldest criticisms aimed at Pokemon GO is its stance toward rural players and those who are unable to travel to high-population areas. Even after Niantic’s changes to make rural gameplay more desirable, players still lack diverse Pokemon spawns or a sizable number of Pokestops.
Mauddib appears to confirm that not much has truly changed, and Niantic still seemingly prefers to cater to players who live in large cities, where Pokemon spawns and Pokestops have grown in abundance.
Unfortunately, for some Pokemon GO fans, remote raiding was one of the few ways they could interact with certain aspects of the game. If a trainer had health issues where they couldn’t be around other players or were too far from a gym (or the weather didn’t permit in-person activities), there wasn’t much else that could be done.
However, the nerf to remote raid passes has further restricted these players while also slanting favorable gameplay more toward fans in high-population zones. The longstanding criticism of Niantic’s favoritism has only magnified.
This may not come as a surprise to many longtime players, as high-population areas of the world clearly benefit Niantic the most when it comes to data collection and microtransactions. While the developers have catered to these locations and the players that inhabit them, the fanbase residing elsewhere has felt the sting.
The unfortunate reality is that Niantic appears to be pressing onward with its plans for Pokemon GO. Even after the #HearUsNiantic campaign began in the wake of the remote raid pass changes, the developers haven’t altered course in the slightest.
Coupled with many other criticisms, many players have sworn off the game entirely, hoping to deny Niantic the location data it sells and the microtransactions it pockets for revenue. Be that as it may, there are still plenty of players who are fiscally supporting the developers by continuing to play the title and spending real-world currency on in-game items.
Players willing to keep Niantic afloat will likely shield the company from any desire to change course in the wake of a flood of fan criticism. There is speculation, of course, but as 2023 has proceeded, the developers have shown remarkable resistance to any outcry from the fanbase.